Viewers praise anti-bullying campaigner who launched his own charity
Boy, 13, who was attacked at school with scissors over his love of musical theatre is hailed an ‘inspiration’ for setting up an anti-bullying charity because there will ‘always be mean people’
- Charlie Kristensen, from Surrey, launched his own charity after being bullied
- READ MORE: Teenager’s honest account of ‘dark time’ growing up with autism
Viewers praised an ‘inspirational’ 13-year-old anti-bullying campaigner who launched his own charity after being bullied for his love of musical theatre.
Charlie Kristensen, from Surrey, joined Alison Hammond and Dermot O’Leary on the This Morning couch to speak about the campaign #CheerUpCharlie which was started in 2019 after he was bullied severely for over 18 months in part due to his love of performing.
After receiving messages of support from the West End community, the young campaigner decided to set up a charity called the Charlie Kristensen Foundation, which will launch with a charity concert tomorrow.
There’s No Place Like Home, which is hosted by singer Divina De Campo, will take place at the Lyric Theatre on 22 October.
Charlie said: ‘It took me a while to realise this, but I know that no matter how hard I try or what I do there will always be mean people and I can’t change that.
Viewers praised an ‘inspirational’ 13-year-old anti-bullying campaigner Charlie Kristensen, from Surrey, who launched his own charity after being bullied for his love of musical theatre
‘I will never be able to stamp out bullying for good. But I want to make a safe place for every child who was going through what I was going through can message and come and talk, and be like “I can’t do this, this is too much”.
‘Just a safe place where they feel like they can talk and where they can be whoever they want to be.
‘And eventually my biggest dream is to do a big West End workshop full of the West End stars and bringing kids who may never be able to experience the arts, to come and do it, and then they could find out how cool the theatre actually is.’
Charlie’s mum Kat added: ‘This boy was put on this earth to make a difference and that is what he will do.’
Opening up about being bullied the teen said he had never been ‘Mr popular’ but it started to get worse after he began attending drama classes.
He said: ‘I went from having a few people to sit with, to when I got to sit down people would move away, it took me a long time and I just didn’t understand why.
‘It was an awful experience and it just started getting more and more and then there were the nasty comments and then hitting me and punching me and kicking me.’
Kat went onto say that Charlie had been ‘attacked with scissors’ while at school but not much was being done to protect her son.
The young campaigner revealed that a charity concert will take place in the West End to mark the launch of the Charlie Kristensen Foundation
Many of the This Morning viewers rushed to the comments praising Charlie for his bravery
She said: ‘You do feel helpless, people now see this Charlie, but I had lost that Charlie for a long time, and as a parent I can sit here and say that had something not happened I’d be now sat here with a foundation in the memory of Charlie.’
In 2018, after months of enduring bullying at school Charlie opened up to his performance coach, West End actress Jacqueline Hughes, she rallied the theatre industry into action.
Performers from the West End and Broadway identified with Charlie’s story and inundating him with supportive video messages.
Following backstage invitations and national media interviews, Charlie decided to channel his own experiences and the support he’d received into fighting for others, becoming an anti-bullying ambassador.
In 2021, he was recognised with The Diana Award – the highest accolade a young person can achieve for social action or humanitarian efforts.
Charlie joined Alison Hammond and Dermot O’Leary on the This Morning couch to speak about his campaign #CheerUpCharlie which he started in 2019 after been bullied severely for over 18 months in part due to his love of performing
Many of the This Morning viewers rushed to the comments praising Charlie for his bravery.
One person said: ‘Inspirational young man , well done Charlie, bullies destroy lives and they need to realise that , I hope and pray that many young people who might have watched today can be inspired by you and hold their heads up high again #stopbullying’
Another said: ‘What an uplifting interview — I couldn’t imagine a brighter start to anyone’s day. I completely agree with this young trailblazer’s mum; Charlie was indeed given to the world to make a difference. Absolutely cannot wait until Sunday!#BeMoreCharlie
Someone else said: #charliekristensen on This Morning what a guy such an incredible, wonderful human. I hope you book more dates for the show, id love to see it. #cheerupcharlie #musicaltheatre #theresnoplacelikehome #antibully’
A fourth wrote: ‘Parents must be so proud. What an amazing young man.’
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